To this date CuanTec has been a central part of my life for nearly 6 years, it was 2 years in the planning and has been almost 4 years of operations under it’s belt and I am extremely proud of what the whole team past and present has managed to achieve in that time.
At the heart are the values that myself and the founding scientist, Dr Ryan Taylor, put in place. Sustainability in the true UN 2045 goals sense, a place of rapid innovation, global ambition but small enough to consider the needs of individual staff too.
We were ahead of our time. We shaped a business idea that was on the fringes of believability. We decided to use biology to solve a problem that chemistry normally tackles alongside boundless ambition and self-assurance that we can find the answers to all the challenges if we just look hard enough. By creating a novel, but economically viable way of getting chitin, intact, largely undamaged out of it's shell/surroundings, we believe we can create alternatives to many single use consumer products.
We wanted to tackle some of the world's biggest issues head on - food waste and also excessive use of plastic packaging are the first goals.
We were determined that we wanted to create a fully compostable packaging – initially we were told that supermarkets and consumers would never accept that, that waste processors wouldn’t like it as it doesn’t fit their systems. But we persisted because we believed that it was the right thing to do for the planet. Then Blue Planet 2 was aired in Autumn 2017 and the whole world suddenly understood what we had already grasped. Compostable food packaging is a big challenge, but it is a vital part of removing plastic pollution and protecting our food chain.
We were determined that we could create a viable business that works closely with the environment and allows people to work where they want to live. A company that respects the value of the input of our staff and despite rural locations, away from the rat-race, is still capable of attracting and retaining highly qualified staff who share our ambitions. Then came Covid and a world awakening to the ease of international business over internet calls and a greater appreciation of human connection with the beauty of the world around us.
CuanTec isn’t ever going to jump on the Green Deal bandwagon – we have been leading the charge, influencing the narrative since our first days.
I pass the baton of responsibility of this onto Craig with great pleasure. He is the ideal person with boundless energy, deep understanding of the technology and equally unlimited ambition for the future. I believe that CuanTec’s future – especially the ethos at its heart – is in safe hands.
Dr Cait Murray-Green
10th Sept 2020